I love Greek mythology and history. Several years ago I ran a MUD named Athens. It was a free to play Greek Mythology Fantasy game. The game was a big part of my life for the better part of 3 years. The world was a complex one. The maps reflected the generally correct geography of Greece and surrounding seas – with some mythological based changes. There were many hours spent researching ancient Greek culture, the gods, myths, monsters and locations. It was a fun place to explore while learning a bit about history, politics, culture and geography. After a few years of running the game with a very small player base and no active staff to speak of, I made the decision to shut down Athens about 3 years ago.
The large world in that MUD had a great setting (even if staffing and running a MUD were not always pleasant). I have missed Athens greatly. Since tabletop gaming has been another big part of my life for the past half a decade or so, it seemed logical that the two should meet. With this in mind, I set out to design a table top rpg, based on Athens. I sat down and contemplated the world a bit and began creating character creation, combat and skills rules. I did not get very far. So far I had set up 3 main attributes for characters and several sub-attributes. To keep things balanced, I was going to give the players a set pool of points to distribute among the main attributes and specialize in sub attributes. The daunting task of balancing lay before me.
I decided to check online for other Greek Mythology TT RPG’s to see if anyone had a good combat/skills system already in place. Why reinvent the wheel? I found a great tabletop role play game called AGON (http://agon-rpg.com). The author put up about 30 pages of the game as a free preview. I was sold after going through the preview. The game is a little rules light, which is great if you want a fast paced game. The combat is very similar to the system I was creating. There are 4 main attributes in AGON and each has 4 skills. Again a balancing decision had been made to keep things fairly even in the game. There are no dice rolls to set up stats. The players start with all skills as a D6. They can bump a stat up to a D8 by downgrading a different stat to a D4. This works out pretty well.
For me, the great thing about AGON is that it doesn’t have a campaign world. The back of the book has random charts for adventuring islands (think old school D&D random dungeon tables). Since I have a great campaign world already built in Athens, porting it over to AGON should result in a rich, well researched, fun to explore world with a fast paced, balanced and easy to understand combat and skills system.
It’s going to be a labor of love, moving all of the monsters and NPC’s over to the AGON system. Fortunately, once you create a few monsters in AGON the pace seems fairly quick. There are a few things AGON is missing that I will end up having to add to create ‘the game in my head’. The first things that come to mind: character creation rules for fantasy species such as satyrs, nymphs, centaurs, minotaurs, etcs. In the future, I’ll be posting some of the monsters I’ve created and maybe a full adventure or two. It’s exciting to have something like this to look forward to.